The long-overdue death of Osama bin Laden at the hands of US Special Forces has rightly brought relief and happiness to many millions of people. Indeed, it is hard to imagine an individual more deserving of such an end than he – justice has finally been served. Moreover, the elimination of so influential a figure among Islamic terrorist circles, whose involvement with them traces back to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, is additional cause to celebrate.

…anticipating fresh terrorist attacks in the aftermath of this event.

Of course, whether this will have an appreciable impact upon Islamic terrorist networks is another matter. Anjem Choudary, one of Britain’s most high-profile supporters of bin Laden, was quoted by The Telegraph as anticipating fresh terrorist attacks in the aftermath of this event. One can only hope that he is as wrong about this as he is about many other things.

Though too early to tell if Choudary’s prediction is valid, Islamic terrorist audacity seems unabated, if (head of the Hamas Gaza government) Ismail Haniya’s condemnation of the killing is anything to go by.

…it can be defeated – as the death of a man once thought too elusive to capture has proven.

What is a certainty, however, is that western governments would be ill-advised to use this as an excuse for complacency: Islamic terrorism, like the Hydra of ancient mythology, is a many-headed beast. Instead, the end of so loathsome a man as bin Laden should be used as foundations to reinforce the pursuit of his ilk. The threat posed by Al-Qaeda’s supremely irrational and malevolent ideology, and those who embrace it, remains. However, it can be defeated – as the death of a man once thought too elusive to capture has proven. Today, we should celebrate. Tomorrow we must continue the fight.

 

About The Author

As a student of War Studies and History at King's College London, politics and key events – both past and current – have always fascinated me. Inspired to engage with political ideas by my interest in foreign languages and cultures, I seek to approach and analyse current affairs with a distinct and challenging perspective.

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